10:50 AM, 24th May 2022, About 2 years ago 37
I had a very large and aggressive tenant who was in rent arrears. For the 11 years of his occupation, he was regularly behind with the top-up to his housing benefit and I would periodically have to ask for back payments.
When he told me he couldn’t afford to pay for 6 months to pay for his holiday, I gave up and began Section 8 Possession in 2020 for circa £2k o/s rent.
The tenant went to Shelter with a list of complaints of disrepair, some he had caused the damage himself, some he hadn’t reported to me and others that I’d made efforts to rectify despite being excluded from entering the property for a year.
There was a counterclaim for disrepair and notional damages up to the amount of £ 15k claimed against me! Plus the risk of considerable legal costs should I lose the case.
I sought the assistance of Chris from Possession Friend. He worked with me from mid-2020 through to the 2-day court hearing culminating this month. My statement of evidence was massively enhanced and Chris spent a great deal of time throughout the very emotional and time-consuming process, advising and supporting me, including attending court.
The case was presented for the tenant by a barrister on legal aid, sourced by Shelter (at an unknown but significant cost to the taxpayer).
I represented myself with advice and support from Chris.
After considering the substantial evidence I submitted, the judge said he didn’t believe the tenant’s version and awarded me outstanding rent and possession.
Landlord 1 – Shelter Nil
As a result of my experience, I will be selling the property so there’ll be one less rental property in a market of high demand. Going forward, I will not rent to a tenant in receipt of benefit without references and a cast-iron guarantor.
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